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Thread: Best 30 cal bullet

  1. #1
    LEAD MAGNET



    Roundnoser's Avatar
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    Best 30 cal bullet

    I'm thinking about casting 30 cal. bullets for my 308 and 30-06 rifles (for hunting whitetail deer). I'd like a 150 - 165 grain (prefer a 165) bullet. It has to work well with both 308 and 06.

    Any one have any favorite molds for 30 cal. that would work best in my situation?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master
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    The RCBS 165 SIL will be as good as any, and better than most. It works well in the short neck of the .308 keeping the gas check out of the boiler room. It shoots well in all of my .308s (4 of them) and my 30-06's (5 of them).

  3. #3
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    There is no "one size fits all". My approacy would be to make a determination of what boolit design will fit each of your gun's chambers and throats best, then make it of the appropriate alloy for hunting, and finally develop a load based upon the boolit weight, rifling twist rate, and velocities you will be using. Keep an open mind about weights, as you may find one gun likes a shorter and lighter boolit than the other due to fit limitations, while the other may like a longer boolit. Some guns prefer Loverin designs, while others like the Silhoutte designs with a bore-riding nose.

    I would start with a chamber cast, or you can make and impact "slug" your chamber yourself using an unsized, fired-in-you-gun case that has been filled halfway up the neck with soft lead and had a soft lead boolit seated on top. Chamber it and pound the slug to conform to the leade, throat, and chamber with a steel, tape-covered rod from the muzzle end. Once you have a slug, you can see what boolit shape will fit the best, and then purchase a mould based upon that shape. This will also give you internal chamber neck dimensions which will let you determine how "fat" of a boolit your gun can handle with a given brass neck thickness, which is a good accuracy trick.

    Gear
    You can't fix Stupid, but you can occasionally head it off before it hurts something. --Stephen Adams

    To universalize one's experience and state it as the norm is always thin ice on which to stand.--CharGar

    Being able to separate the wheat from the chaff has always been a valuable skill in all of life's activities. --Bwana


  4. #4
    Boolit Master Marlin Junky's Avatar
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    I purchased RCBS 30-165-SIL to develop a mid-range varmint load but would go with my 311041 or RCBS 30-180-FN for a deer boolit design; however, the latter will cast 15-20 grains more than 041.

    MJ

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
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    When I read your original post I missed the part about hunting. I don't hunt any more, so I assume everybody wants to punch holes in paper.

    The RCBS would not make a good hunting bullet due to he nose design. You would be better off with a blunt round nose like 311291 or one of the flat nose bulllets designed for the 30-30

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I believe the 311291 to be the best 30cal for all except the small cases (30carb,32-20 etc) if you will never use a tube mag the 311413 is a good choice.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master
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    All good suggestions. Plus, here's my two cent's worth. It's all about compromise of the following factors: soft enough to expand nicely, but hard enough to be driven fast enough to do the job. With alloys that give reliable expansion without shattering (pretty much in the BHN 16 range and softer) you're limited to very low 2000's fps- if that much- before serious leading rears it's ugly head. That's with any weight bullet, 90 to 220 grains. That said, the heavier designs, with round or flat points, simply work better. Notice I said "better." That's not to say a 140-165gr. design won't do the job. It will, but not with the alacrity that a 180-200 gr. number will. (Better yet, up the ante and go with a .35 or bigger caliber to get into some real heavy weights that leave the .30's in the dust in terms of real-world killing power with cast lead.) My favorite in .30/30-class cartridges- ie, 2000fps<> is 190 gr. flat point, but recent experiments with the 311284 220gr. show a lot of promise.

    Like I said, it's merely my opinion, what works for me.

  8. #8
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    the rcbs 150 fngc does rather respectably in a wide range of 30 cal guns around here and it feeds in the 30-30 levergun too.
    it shoots well in the 7.5 swiss and the savage 0-6 too.
    my tight throated 30's would rather have the 165 silhouette.
    and the looser ones do well with the nei loverign [which i think lyman has a copy of or made first whatever]
    or the 314299 which does well in the 31 cals.
    but if i had to make do with just one of them, for hunting and all out to 150 yds.
    it'd be the rcbs 150 fngc.
    it's all an educated guess,,,, till the trigger is pulled.

    the more i find out about shootin boolits, the more it contradicts everything i ever learned about shooting jaxketed.

  9. #9
    Boolit Master


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    I've found, in .30 cal, it is very hard to beat the 311041 as a hunting cast bullet. It has a weight that always shoots accurately in .30 cal twists of 10 or 12" and even 14" twist Palma barrels. It is excellent in most every '06 and offers little problems in loading. It also provides excellent hunting accuracy upwards of 21-2200 fps if the right loading technique and powder is used. If the .308W has a throat that allows seating the bullet to the leade without the top of the GC extending below the bottom of the case neck then equal accuracy and velocities can be had as with the '06. If either the '06 or the .308W rifles have 12" twists then acceptable hunting accuracy at 23-2400 fps can be achieved, again with the right casting/loading technique.

    If the throat does not allow the 311041 to be seated as such in the short necked .308W then the RCBS 30-150-FN as runfiverun suggests is a very good bullet to use, especially when cast of 50/50 WW/lead and the nose is HP'd to 1/3 the nose length with a Forster HP tool.

    Larry Gibson

  10. #10
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    geargnasher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gnoahhh View Post
    All good suggestions. Plus, here's my two cent's worth. It's all about compromise of the following factors: soft enough to expand nicely, but hard enough to be driven fast enough to do the job. With alloys that give reliable expansion without shattering (pretty much in the BHN 16 range and softer) you're limited to very low 2000's fps- if that much- before serious leading rears it's ugly head. That's with any weight bullet, 90 to 220 grains. That said, the heavier designs, with round or flat points, simply work better. Notice I said "better." That's not to say a 140-165gr. design won't do the job. It will, but not with the alacrity that a 180-200 gr. number will. (Better yet, up the ante and go with a .35 or bigger caliber to get into some real heavy weights that leave the .30's in the dust in terms of real-world killing power with cast lead.) My favorite in .30/30-class cartridges- ie, 2000fps<> is 190 gr. flat point, but recent experiments with the 311284 220gr. show a lot of promise.

    Like I said, it's merely my opinion, what works for me.
    The 311284 is what I used in my HV .30-'06 workups, a very good boolit. Wish I had the mould or had cast more boolits from my friend's when I borrowed it.

    I'll add one thing, and this is unqualified because I haven't killed anything worse than two feet of wet newsprint with it, there is a way to stretch the expansion/durability compromise: Use an alloy like 75% clip-on wheel weights, 23 -1/2% pure lead, and 1-1/2% tin, in other words 96-2-2 or something like it (make sure it has a touch of arsenic, if in doubt add some Magnum shot), and oven heat-treat it to 20 bhn or so. This can be pushed to the mid 2k with accuracy using slow powders and still mushroom double without fragmenting. Looks good on "paper", anyway.

    Gear
    You can't fix Stupid, but you can occasionally head it off before it hurts something. --Stephen Adams

    To universalize one's experience and state it as the norm is always thin ice on which to stand.--CharGar

    Being able to separate the wheat from the chaff has always been a valuable skill in all of life's activities. --Bwana


  11. #11
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    Blammer's Avatar
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    This one is my choice
    311291 reg or HP


    or this one
    311041
    Sometimes you have to ignore the "good idea fairy"

    Please stop telling me "That can't be done" while I'm doing it, it's just plain annoying.

    HOW to order GC's and any other questions go here:
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  12. #12
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    Roundnoser's Avatar
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    Thanks alot! Lots of good information...will keep me ahead of the learning curve! (also, very nice bullet pics!) -- Probably not this year, but I suspect I'll work up a load for next year's deer season.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master

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    I agree with the class of heavy weight, flat point, or hp.

    Doug

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
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